IT’S that time of the year again when basketball action briefly gives way to the highly-awaited UAAP Cheerdance Competition.
This year, National University will be going for a third straight championship while seven other teams try to play the spoilers’ role amid a festive atmosphere at the Mall of Asia Arena on Saturday.
University of Santo Tomas and University of the Philippines are the winningest teams with eight titles each in the 21-year history of the cheerdance competition, but NU has established itself as the team to beat this year.
Let's take a look at the competition in this third installment of an eight-part series:
La Salle Animo Squad
WITH a rookie-laden squad, the La Salle Animo Squad is keeping expectations low in terms of battling for podium spots.
But they are confident they will pull off a fine performance.
A podium placer two years ago, La Salle skidded to sixth last year and is now looking to bounce back.
Squad manager Andrew Maravillas said they have addressed what they believe was their weak point last year, but they are still keeping expectations to a minimum.
“This year was really, really, hard for us, we prepared a lot sa stunts, pero ang pagkukulang talaga namin last year is ’yung dance,” Maravillas told Spin.ph.
“I can’t say any expectations when it comes to the outcome or in terms of placing,” he said. “But I’m very sure that our team, people can expect from our team na buo ang loob namin and paninindigan namin ang performance.”
The outspoken team manager Maravillas believes National University and University of the Philippines, who have gone 1-2 the past two years, are still the ones that will battle for the top spot, and added Far eastern University could be the in the mix.
“Ang NU hindi naman ’yan basta-basta mahuhulog mula sa top spot, then UP alam naman nating
lahat they always have a very clean performance, and FEU… Takot ako sa FEU.”
He noted that FEU is a threat because new coach Randell San Gregorio is really good in dance.
“They’re new coach is really, really, good in dance,” said Maravillas.
“Then the mixture pa of their dancers and the experience of the new coach must not be taken for granted.”
But Maravillas stressed that he believes his squad members can bring best out of each other.
“For me the advantage of La Salle Animo Squad is to never lose hope and always squeeze the best we could get from each other.”